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Chapter from: "Key Account Management Strategies to Leverage Information, Technology, and Relationships to Deliver Value to Large Customers"
Published by: Business Expert Press
Originally published in: 2015
Revision date: 06-Sep-2018

Abstract

Now more than ever, companies are faced with a critical and challenging truth. Today's customer is demanding more attention, superior service, and the expertise of a dedicated sales team. Suppliers must make difficult choices to determine how to allocate limited resources, including which customers receive the highest level of service. Increasingly, supply side organizations are working to design and implement key account programs to meet or exceed these expectations. Key account management is a specific business strategy that involves complex sales processes, large-scale negotiations, and the alignment of multiple internal and external stakeholders. This multi-pronged process is anything but straightforward, and the business world is filled with examples of key account programs that have not achieved the expected results. This book addresses the strategic challenges facing top executives and sales leaders as they build strategies to better manage their key accounts. Through a new approach to the selling center and the buying center concepts, the text offers sound, experiential solutions to better manage large customers, resulting in co-creating value for both the supplier and the customer. Moreover, the authors describe how to leverage customer relationship management (CRM) technologies to streamline the selling center and the buying center with more team collaboration, data accessibility, and readiness. The objective of key account management is to increase the value of the relationship to the stakeholders of both organizations. To achieve this value optimization, the authors have integrated the processes/objectives/planning of key account management and sales effectiveness while leveraging information, technology, and relationships. To this end, this text provides direct, action-oriented answers to the following key questions: When should a key account program be implemented and when should it not? How does one align key customer and supplier interests? How to manage the selling center and the buying center? How is value co-created for key customers and suppliers? How can complex customer and supplier processes be streamlined through CRM systems to better integrate the buying center with the selling center? How can key account programs maintain and grow market leadership through key account managers' critical role? By leveraging up-to-date research, testimonials drawn from interviews with experienced practitioners, best practices of successful companies, along with straightforward practical guidelines for executives and sales leaders, this book can serve as an instruction manual and toolbox for organizations working to achieve success through their key account strategies to meet the demand of their key customers. This chapter was excerpted from 'Key Account Management Strategies to Leverage Information, Technology, and Relationships to Deliver Value to Large Customers'.

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Abstract

Now more than ever, companies are faced with a critical and challenging truth. Today's customer is demanding more attention, superior service, and the expertise of a dedicated sales team. Suppliers must make difficult choices to determine how to allocate limited resources, including which customers receive the highest level of service. Increasingly, supply side organizations are working to design and implement key account programs to meet or exceed these expectations. Key account management is a specific business strategy that involves complex sales processes, large-scale negotiations, and the alignment of multiple internal and external stakeholders. This multi-pronged process is anything but straightforward, and the business world is filled with examples of key account programs that have not achieved the expected results. This book addresses the strategic challenges facing top executives and sales leaders as they build strategies to better manage their key accounts. Through a new approach to the selling center and the buying center concepts, the text offers sound, experiential solutions to better manage large customers, resulting in co-creating value for both the supplier and the customer. Moreover, the authors describe how to leverage customer relationship management (CRM) technologies to streamline the selling center and the buying center with more team collaboration, data accessibility, and readiness. The objective of key account management is to increase the value of the relationship to the stakeholders of both organizations. To achieve this value optimization, the authors have integrated the processes/objectives/planning of key account management and sales effectiveness while leveraging information, technology, and relationships. To this end, this text provides direct, action-oriented answers to the following key questions: When should a key account program be implemented and when should it not? How does one align key customer and supplier interests? How to manage the selling center and the buying center? How is value co-created for key customers and suppliers? How can complex customer and supplier processes be streamlined through CRM systems to better integrate the buying center with the selling center? How can key account programs maintain and grow market leadership through key account managers' critical role? By leveraging up-to-date research, testimonials drawn from interviews with experienced practitioners, best practices of successful companies, along with straightforward practical guidelines for executives and sales leaders, this book can serve as an instruction manual and toolbox for organizations working to achieve success through their key account strategies to meet the demand of their key customers. This chapter was excerpted from 'Key Account Management Strategies to Leverage Information, Technology, and Relationships to Deliver Value to Large Customers'.

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